“Jabba the Son” Speaks


“Fat III (Child)” (2010-2011); Richard Pasquarelli

“… Oh look. It’s fat family. And ‘Jabba the Son’ sits right beside me. I just lost my 
shit. His fat was on my lap. It was actually on my lap.” - Nicole Arbour, comedian 
Of course the stewardess sits me beside the slender blonde. 
Eyes bluer than mother’s heart medication, hair streaked pink 
as my cheeks must be. I can teach you to apologize using only 
the air around you. Of course this row has just two seats. To see 
the expression on her face, I don’t even need eyes. If I shoved 
my hand through the swamp of my chest, snarl of sweat & hair 
& fine, something approximating butter, wrenched my heart free 
& showed it to you, two things: 1. Finally. 2. The Expression On 
Her Face. I carry it like some top-secret badge. Soon we will be air-
borne. Soon I will not move my arms for three hours or five or ten, 
I mean, if we’re talking about willpower. I will fold myself smaller 
than a choice. So okay, I’ll feel the sweat spreading, suffocating 
the tunnels beneath these breasts. Dumb breasts I have because
yes, we’re talking about willpower. Each day I wake up & make 
choices. Maybe I should say each day I wake up or make choices. 
Maybe I should say each day my choices wake up. Today I foist it
upon her, this aggregate of choices, this burden of a body, body 
of frantic decision. Certainly she’s made her little choices as well - 
hers leading to appropriate airplane size, mine to inappropriate air-
plane size. I don’t know what language she speaks - I wish I knew 
I’m sorry in all of them. But best to be silent. Perhaps she’ll forget 
the circumstance of you, or better, perhaps she’s taken a pill for sleep
& in her drowsiness will mistake you for a soft, soft mountain, lean 
her head against you &, no, no, no, dumb fat idiot. Did you remember 
deodorant? What will it mean if you eat the in-flight meal? If you refer 
to yourself in the second person will it be easier to believe you’re not 
what you are? To sit somehow with her, the two of you sitting next 
to you, rolling your eyes at the flagrant inconvenience? But, here 
I am. I could make her laugh with a joke about it. It being me. 
Me being the misfortune. Though beyond the laughing, what? Six 
more hours? Does a joke make it less real? Does a joke make me 
less real? Can I joke myself back into vapor? Perhaps I could say 
Look on the bright side - if we crash into the ocean you’ll have 
a vest AND a raft! Sometimes you have to kill yourself in order 
to survive. We should have chosen a later flight. Something near 
to midnight. When the plane is packed with room for what I am.
When the plane is so dark I can imagine I’m the shuddering heart 
of a swift & endless bird. Stupid McDonald’s. I should have gotten 
the. I don’t remember. If I had to choose, if I were her, would I rather 
have me smell like the cheeseburgers, the fries, the chicken sandwich, 
the chocolate shake, the apple pie? Take a cue from the stars, fat boy - 
plunge so deep inside your own bulk you become a perfect absence. 
& too, do I risk pulling the seatbelt over me, having her see it isn’t 
long enough, or do I snake it under my belly & risk her dreaming 
of the way it vanishes within me like the promise of a soothing 
journey? There is so much to think about. What if I have to use
the restroom? Arduous trek to the rear of the plane & then back
to her. Must she bear again this gross infringement - my body
encroaching like the sky, the heaviness of my breathing?

About Jeremy Radin

Jeremy Radin is a poet/actor living in Los Angeles. His first book, "Slow Dance with Sasquatch", is available from Write Bloody Publishing. You may have seen him on "It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia" or "CSI" or "Zoey 101" or in a restaurant aggressively eating pancakes by himself. View all posts by Jeremy Radin

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